Shiny and delightfully sticky rustic buns with decorative crisscrossed tops.
MAKES 8 BUNS
20g fresh yeast or 7g (2 tsp) active dry yeast
1 tbsp granulated sugar
180ml lukewarm water
300g plain flour, sifted
2 rosemary sprigs, chopped (about 1 tbsp)
60ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing
Pinch of salt
FOR THE GLAZE
55g granulated sugar
2 tbsp water
- Combine the yeast, sugar and water in a bowl then let it sit for 10 minutes until dissolved. Pour over the flour and combine to make a firm ball of dough. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with a tea towel and let it rise in a warm place for 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, put the sultanas, rosemary and oil together in a bowl and set aside to infuse until the dough has risen.
- Combine the dough with the sultanas, rosemary, oil and salt by kneading. Work the ingredients together by kneading, then divide into eight small balls weighing approximately 70g-80g each. Place the buns on a baking tray lined with baking paper and cover loosely with the tea towel. Allow the buns to rise for a further 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Brush the tops with olive oil and slash a tic-tac-toe grid (similar to a hash symbol) over each one with a very sharp knife. Let them rest for another 10-15 minutes, then bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare a sugar syrup glaze by dissolving the sugar in the water in a small saucepan and bringing to the boil. Take off the heat and brush the hot buns with the hot syrup.
TIP The buns are best eaten the day they are made, but they will keep well for one to two days in an airtight container.
Now buy the book
Our recipes are from Torta Della Nonna by food writer Emiko Davies (Hardie Grant, £16.99). Emiko has lived in Florence for more than a decade and the book is a collection of some of her beloved Italian desserts. To order a copy for £14.95 until 28 March, go to mailshop.co.uk/books or call 020 3308 9193. Free p&p on orders over £20.